Double Ditch project completed

Published: Mar. 14, 2018 at 9:24 PM CDT
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The Double Ditch Indian Village state historic site along the Missouri River north of Bismarck suffered major flood damage in 2011.

From the 1400s to the 1700s, Double Ditch was home to generations of Mandan Indians. But flooding decimated the riverbank, and exposed the remains of previous occupants. The state of North Dakota began a charge to restore the property after the damage. The State Historical Society, Native American groups, and funding from the legislature all spurred the project on. Now restoration is complete and enhancements include new trails and a canoe and kayak landing.

"We need to appreciate the environment and the places, very important historic places that we have such as this and it provides that opportunity,” said Fern Swenson, Director of the State Historical Society of North Dakota’s Archeology and Historic Preservation Division.

Not all the bodies that were exposed have been reburied, but Swenson says that will be completed sometime this spring.